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Table of Content
    Volume 29 Issue 8
    20 August 2021
    The discovery of new species and timely update of the catalogue of species are vital for biodiversity research and conservation. The 2020 New Taxa Collection of this issue consists of 10 articles that summarize the new taxa of Chinese plants, fungi, vertebrates, insects and spiders published in the year 2020, and provide detailed lists of new taxa and related information. The plant and fungus papers also summarize the publication trends of new taxa on a global scale. The pictures show some representative new species published in 2020 (left to right, top to bottom): Petrocodon chishuiensis, Polystichum asiae-minoris, Cangshanaltica fuanensis, Tipula (Formotipula) sp., Asianopis wangi, Cortinarius sinensis, Sarcocheilichthys vittatus, Pyrrhula owstoni, Ailurus fulgens, Megophrys zhoui, Trimeresurus caudornatus. (Photograph credit: Fang Wen, Libing Zhang, Yongying Ruan, Anxian Shi, Guohou Wan, Mengle Xie, Changting An, Jiahui Ma, Arjun Thapa, Shengchao Shi, and Li Ding)
      
    2020 New Taxa Collection
    Global new species of vascular plants published in 2020
    Xia Wan, Libing Zhang
    Biodiv Sci. 2021, 29 (8):  1003-1010.  doi:10.17520/biods.2021156
    Abstract ( 645 )   HTML ( 40 )   PDF (3505KB) ( 373 )   Supplementary Material   Save
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    Aims: Research and publication of the planet's remaining plant species as yet unknown to science is essential if we are to address the United Nations Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 15 “Life on Land” which includes the protection of terrestrial ecosystems and halting of biodiversity loss. If species are not known to science, they cannot be assessed on the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) Red List of Threatened Species, and thus reducing the possibility to protect them from extinction. Scientific discovery, including naming new taxa, is important because without a scientific name, a species is invisible to science and the possibilities of researching its ecology, applications, and threats, and conserving it, are greatly reduced. This study analyzes the new species of vascular plants in the world published in 2020, aims to enrich the basic information about the new species of vascular plants in the world, discuss the current threats to biodiversity, and summarize the direction of future research.

    Methods: The data were derived from the International Plant Name Index (IPNI; https://www.ipni.org/). Statistics of new species of vascular plants published in 2020 were available as of February 1, 2021 excluding new combinations, new statuses or new names and bryophyte data. In order to facilitate the comparison of new species of vascular plants discovered and published in major regions and countries in 2020, the data in this article were only from IPNI, although IPNI had not documented all new species published in 2020 by February 1, 2021, and those species published in some local journals (such as university journals) and local monographs were not available in IPNI.

    Results: In 2020, 1,747 new species of vascular plants were described worldwide in 103 journals and 5 books by 1,544 botanists (264 Chinese botanists, 1,280 non-Chinese botanists), as documented in IPNI. Among the 1,747 new species, 1,689 belonged to angiosperms, 52 to pteridophytes, and only 6 to gymnosperms. A large number of new species were from the largest families, such as Asteraceae, Orchidaceae, and Piperaceae. Southern America and tropical Asia were the most important regions of new discoveries with more than 828 new species described in 2020. By country, China, Brazil, and Madagascar were the top three with the most new species discovered in 2020, with 247, 223, and 99, respectively. Phytotaxa and PhytoKeys were the top two journals in terms of the numbers of new species of vascular plants published in 2020 and published 644 and 168 species, respectively. Among various new names there were five invalid names and two illegitimate names.

    Conclusions: Despite the increased attention given to biodiversity in recent years, the evidence indicates that a number of species in the world have yet to be discovered. Further investigations of the world vascular plants are still needed, especially in biodiversity hotspots and islands. We recommend an urgent increase in investment in scientific discovery of plant species, while they still survive. Priorities include more investment in training taxonomists, in building and equipping collections-based research centers, especially in species-rich, income-poor regions where the bulk of species are yet unknown to science.

    Annual report of new taxa and new names for Chinese plants in 2020
    Cheng Du, Jun Liu, Wen Ye, Shuai Liao, Binjie Ge, Bing Liu, Jinshuang Ma
    Biodiv Sci. 2021, 29 (8):  1011-1020.  doi:10.17520/biods.2021122
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    Aim: China has the richest and most diverse flora in the northern hemisphere, with more than 37,098 accepted species of higher plants throughout its vast territory. Each year more than 200 new species from China have been described, but these data have not been updated in international databases expediently. To meet this need, it is necessary to produce an annual report on new taxa, name changes, and latest statuses of higher plants in China.

    Methods: We collected information about new taxa and name changes for Chinese higher plants by searching 231 journals and books and 405 articles published in 66 journals and 2 books. We compiled the information and checked the scientific name, author, location, type specimen, and additional relevant information for each species.

    Results: In 2020, a total of 359 new taxa of higher plants described from China were reported, including 21 new genera, 312 new species, 6 new subspecies, 14 new varieties, and 6 new forms, as well as 217 new combinations and names at new ranks and 11 new replacement names. In addition, 48 plants were new records for China, 85 names were determined as synonyms of 65 taxa, 14 names were revised, lectotypes or neotypes were designated for 147 names, 2 species were rediscovered, and 3 species were excluded from China. These newly described species belong to Marchantiophyta (3 species), Bryophyta (3 species), Pteridophyta (6 species), Gymnospermae (1 new nothospecies), and Magnoliophyta (299 species). A total of 86 new species were published with detailed molecular evidence, and 78 new species were evaluated as threatened species according to IUCN standards. Four southwestern provinces, including Yunnan, Xizang, Guangxi, and Sichuan, were the most important sources of new discoveries, accounting for two thirds of the total number of new species published in China. Yunnan, Hainan, Taiwan, Guangxi, and Zhejiang had the highest density of newly discovered species.

    Conclusions: In 2020 in China, a net of 294 (0.79% of the total number) new plant taxa were recorded and 313 (0.84% of the total number) plant names were changed. 2020 was undoubtedly a fruitful year in plant taxonomic research, with the largest increase in the number of species discovered, the number of taxonomic revisions made, and the number of articles published on Chinese higher plants since 2000.

    New vertebrate forms discovered in China in 2020
    Bin Wang, Bo Cai, Weitao Chen, Zhixin Wen, Dezhi Zhang, Shunping He, Fumin Lei, Qisen Yang, Jianping Jiang
    Biodiv Sci. 2021, 29 (8):  1021-1025.  doi:10.17520/biods.2021214
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    Aim: To review the new species and new national records of vertebrates discovered in China in 2020.

    Methods: We compiled and analyzed the taxonomic literature on China's fauna published in 2020.

    Results: In 2020, 100 new species and nine new national records of vertebrates were discovered in China. These include: 24 new species of fishes; 41 new species and four new national records of amphibians; 30 new species and four new national records of reptiles; one new species of bird; and four new species and one new national record of mammals. Of these newly recorded vertebrate species, molecular genetic data were used to evaluate 92 of the species described, which constituted 84.4% of the total number of newly recorded species. Most of these species are within the classes Amphibia and Reptilia; the orders Anura and Squamata constituted 70% of the total newly recorded vertebrate species. Geographically, more than 60% of the newly recorded vertebrate species were discovered in southwestern China; Yunnan, Xizang, Hunan, Guizhou, and Sichuan provinces each had 10 or more new species described in 2020. The majority of the species were described by Chinese researchers and most of their findings were published in English language journals.

    Conclusion: These results indicate that taxonomic studies, particularly those of the basal groups of vertebrates, should be the continuous focus of biodiversity research in China. Future studies should adopt an integrative taxonomic approach and include molecular genetic data.

    New taxa and taxonomic changes of Hymenoptera from China in 2020
    Huanxi Cao, Zeqing Niu, Pu Tang, Tao Li, Chaodong Zhu
    Biodiv Sci. 2021, 29 (8):  1026-1034.  doi:10.17520/biods.2021167
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    Aim: The aim of this study is to summarize the new taxa and taxonomic changes of Hymenoptera from China published in 2020.

    Method: Through searching the available zoological databases and collecting data from Chinese hymenopterists, in 2020, 104 journal publications and 1 monograph related to the new taxa and taxonomic changes of Hymenoptera from China were obtained and analyzed.

    Results: Based on these publications, 469 records of new taxa, new records and taxonomic changes of Hymenoptera from China were retrieved, including 4 new genera (1 extinct genus), 1 new subgenus, 321 new species (10 extinct species), 8 new combinations, 22 new synonyms, 1 newly recorded subfamily, 18 newly recorded genera, 93 newly recorded species, and 1 replaced name. In 11 records of them, 3 superfamilies, 3 families and 5 genera of extinct hymenopteran were involved. Another 458 records belong to 11 superfamilies, 29 families, 170 genera of extant Hymenoptera, of which 40 genera distributed in 6 families are only related to new distribution records or taxonomic changes. Among these 11 superfamilies, 9 superfamilies with new species published in 2020 include Symphyta: Tenthredinoidea (23 new species); Aculeata of Apocrita: Apoidea (29 new species), Chrysidoidea (2 new species), and Vespoidea (20 new species); Parasitica of Apocrita: Chalcidoidea (23 new species), Cynipoidea (12 new species), Ichneumonoidea (206 new species), Platygastroidea (4 new species), Trigonalyoidea (2 new species).

    Conclusions: Among the 9 superfamilies, Ichneumonoidea had the largest number (206) of new species by covering about 2/3 of 321 new species published in 2020. Five provinces with more new species published in 2020 are Yunnan, Zhejiang, Xizang, Fujian, and Liaoning, covering about 1/2 of the 321 new species. Moreover, the current status and future development of Hymenoptera taxonomy were discussed here based on these results.

    Annual report of new taxa for Chinese Lepidoptera in 2020
    Mujie Qi, Hao Sun, Xinghai Zuo, Houhun Li
    Biodiv Sci. 2021, 29 (8):  1035-1039.  doi:10.17520/biods.2021245
    Abstract ( 412 )   HTML ( 17 )   PDF (853KB) ( 370 )   Supplementary Material   Save
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    Aim: Lepidoptera is one of the largest orders in Insecta and is a group with high economic importance as many pest species of Lepidoptera occur all over the world. China is one of the most biodiverse countries in the world, as it ranges from the Palaearctic to Oriental Regions, and many species new to science are described each year. The aim of this study is to summarize the new taxa of Lepidoptera from China that were reported in 2020.

    Methods: Information regarding new species, newly recorded species, and new synonyms and combinations were collected from several common journals of taxonomy and monographs. In total, 102 articles and 3 monographs are included in this report. From these sources, the scientific names, type localities, and the other relevant information have been summarized.

    Results: The number of new taxa of Chinese Lepidoptera published by domestic and foreign researchers in 2020 has been summarized. In 2020, 196 new taxa of Lepidoptera were reported, including 1 new genus, 190 new species, 5 new subspecies, and 71 newly recorded species for China. Additionally, 55 new combinations and 11 new synonyms have been suggested. All of the new species and subspecies belong to 23 families.

    Conclusions: The number of new species published in Hainan and Yunnan was significantly higher than that in other regions and accounted for two-fifths of the total number of new species published in China in 2020. Yunnan Province had the highest number of newly recorded species for a region in China and accounted for about half of the total number of newly recorded species in China. In general, the number of new species and newly recorded species collected in the south are significantly higher than those in north of China. Moreover, the discovery and description of all Lepidoptera species in China are far from completed, and further investigation of Lepidoptera in China is necessary.

    New taxa of Diptera from China in 2020
    Bing Zhang, Liang Wang, Shuangmei Ding, Ding Yang
    Biodiv Sci. 2021, 29 (8):  1040-1043.  doi:10.17520/biods.2021183
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    Aims:In order to outline the contributions and advances of Diptera taxonomy in China in 2020, we summarize the detailed information of the new taxa, species distribution, and publication cases.

    Methods: Potential source articles were searched and identified from online resources. The Chinese National Knowledge Infrastructure, Web of Science, Elsevier, Springer, and other related academic literature index databases were searched.

    Results: Totally three new genera and 113 new species of Diptera were reported from China in 2020. We ranked the publications from different perspectives: the most newly described taxa were found in Drosophilidae (31 new species), Lauxaniidae (17 new species), and Chironomidae (17 new species); the regions with the greatest number of new taxa were Yunnan (43 new species), Xizang (19 new species or genera) and Sichuan (17 new species or genera); the journals with the most published new taxa are ZooKeys (30 new species or genera), Zootaxa (27 new species or genera) and Entomotaxonomia (22 new species or genera); The research groups that published the most new taxa are Hongwei Chen, Ding Yang, and Xinhua Wang.

    Conclusion: Some progress has been made in the Chinese Diptera classification in 2020, however, gathering a deeper understanding of the dipteran taxonomy remains challenging due to the relatively short research history and insufficient and uneven research foundation. Diptera is a major order of insects, with about 150,000 described species and perhaps more than a quarter of a million species. According to our statistics, 113 new species were described in China last year, then it can be seen that the taxonomic research of Diptera in China has a long way to go. More professionals, more taxonomic group coverage, and wider international collaboration would contribute to the Chinese Diptera research to a higher level.

    New taxa of Coleoptera from China in 2020
    Lulu Li, Yuanyuan Lu, Pingping Du, Yuhuan He, Xiaoyi Dong, Jiasheng Hao, Xingke Yang, Ming Bai
    Biodiv Sci. 2021, 29 (8):  1044-1049.  doi:10.17520/biods.2021164
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    Aims: Coleoptera are the most diverse of all insect orders, exhibiting high economic and ecological significance. The aim of this study is to grasp the situation of new taxa and name changes of Coleoptera from China published in 2020.

    Methods: In this study, 198 articles published in 2020 were utilized to form an annual taxonomic report outlining new taxa and name changes of Chinese Coleoptera.

    Results: A total of 421 new taxa of Chinese Coleoptera were published in 2020, including 21 new genera, 2 new subgenera, 387 new species, and 11 new subspecies. At the Chinese national level, 51 new taxa were recorded. In addition, 56 new combinations, 70 synonyms, 7 restorations and 3 degradations were provided. The taxa of greatest attention included Carabidae, Staphylinidae, Tenebrionidae, Cerambycidae and Curculionidae. 33 Chinese provincial-level administration areas contributed to new taxa and records, with most discoveries being concentrated in Yunnan and Sichuan provinces.

    Conclusion: It is crucial that taxonomic information is regularly updated, digitized, and made available to researchers to promote the dissemination of recent research results and reflect the most current state of scientific knowledge.

    Annual report of new taxa for Chinese Hemiptera and 28 other orders of Insecta in 2020
    Tongyi Liu, Jing Chen, Liyun Jiang, Gexia Qiao
    Biodiv Sci. 2021, 29 (8):  1050-1057.  doi:10.17520/biods.2021200
    Abstract ( 453 )   HTML ( 20 )   PDF (2457KB) ( 496 )   Supplementary Material   Save
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    Aims: This study aims to summarize the new taxa of Chinese Hemiptera and 28 other orders of Insecta (i.e., orders other than Coleoptera, Diptera, Lepidoptera, and Hymenoptera) in 2020.

    Methods: We collected information about newly described taxa, including new genera, species, and subspecies for Chinese Hemiptera and 28 other insect orders in 2020 by searching journals and the Zoological Record database. Based on the described taxa and published literature, we compiled a catalogue of type specimens and a bibliography for new species of Chinese Hemiptera and other insects described in 2020. We also analyzed the biodiversity information provided by type specimens, such as authors, locations, and preservation sites.

    Results: In 2020, a total of 349 new taxa, including 35 new genera, 311 new species, and 3 new subspecies, were described in Chinese Hemiptera and 28 other insect orders. The hotspots for the new species described were in Southwest China and the adjacent areas. Additionally, there are as many as 69 institutions that are designated for the deposition of type specimens; within these, the holotype was primarily collected in domestic collection institutions. In contrast, there were relatively few type specimens collected by foreign institutions, and those collected were mainly paratypes. The 349 new taxa described this year were contributed by 356 authors, and a total of 182 articles were published. Zootaxa and ZooKeys were the main publication journals for these descriptions.

    Conclusion: This study provides baseline data for further in-depth studies in the temporal and spatial patterns of species evolution and biodiversity protection in China. Moreover, in the face of today's rapidly declining biodiversity, we should accelerate the construction of data platforms and the integration of diverse information sources to strengthen the biodiversity research and protection.

    Annual report of Chinese spider taxonomy in 2020
    Zhiyuan Yao, Shuqiang Li
    Biodiv Sci. 2021, 29 (8):  1058-1063.  doi:10.17520/biods.2021140
    Abstract ( 301 )   HTML ( 21 )   PDF (2023KB) ( 226 )   Supplementary Material   Save
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    Aim: The aim of this paper is to provide the 2020 tallies of new taxa of Chinese spiders, and new taxa described by Chinese arachnologists.

    Progresses: Firstly, based on specimens collected in China, a total of 223 new taxa were described in 2020. They comprised a new subfamily, 12 new genera and 201 new species, reported by Chinese arachnologists in 56 papers published over 12 journals, plus another nine new species described by foreign arachnologists. Most new species were discovered in Yunnan, accounting for 38.1% of the new species found in China. Secondly, Chinese arachnologists described a total of 95 new taxa from 12 foreign countries such as Myanmar. The tally stems from two new families, seven new genera and 86 new species. In addition, this paper assesses the impact of Chinese contribution to the taxonomy of spiders on a global basis, one Chinese arachnologist authored for 771 new taxa from 2016 to 2020.

    Overview of nomenclature novelties of fungi in the world and China (2020)
    Ke Wang, Lei Cai, Yijian Yao
    Biodiv Sci. 2021, 29 (8):  1064-1072.  doi:10.17520/biods.2021202
    Abstract ( 316 )   HTML ( 14 )   PDF (2414KB) ( 272 )   Supplementary Material   Save
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    Aims:Fungi have the richest biodiversity on earth, second to insects. Thousands of new fungal species have been discovered and described every year recently. Timely analysis of the published data of new fungal names can show the research hotspots of fungal taxonomy in details and provide reference data for the future development of mycology.

    Method: The taxonomic data of new published fungal name were retrieved from the database of Fungal Names, Index Fungorum and MycoBank.

    Results: In 2020, at least 4,996 new fungal names including 652 new higher taxa, 2,905 new species and new intraspecific taxa, 1,342 new combinations, and 97 other novelties, were published by 1,978 scholars in 885 articles and 9 monographs all over the world, reaching the historically highest annual record of new fungal names. These new names belong to 12 phyla, 44 classes, 173 orders, 469 families and 1,386 genera, among which ascomycetes had received more attentions. The type specimens of new species were from 103 countries and regions in the world. East and Southeast Asia were the hot spots of new species discovery, while China was the country with the highest number of new species discovered (663 species), accounting for 23% of the world's total. Besides, China had made remarkable achievements in fungal taxonomy in 2020, with 333 Chinese scholars participating in the publications of 1,271 new fungal names, accounting for about a quarter of the total number in the world.

    Conclusion: As shown by the analysis, the discovery of new fungal species is accelerating, with the increased number of new published names and authors. However, the description rate of fungal species is still at a low level, which leaves a long-term and arduous task for mycologists to discover undescribed fungi efficiently.

    Original Papers: Plant Diversity
    Effects of environmental and genetic factors on phenotypic traits and species classification of Dendrobium huoshanense
    Zhenbin Jiao, Yibo Luo
    Biodiv Sci. 2021, 29 (8):  1073-1086.  doi:10.17520/biods.2021001
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    Aims: Dendrobium is one of the largest genera in Orchidaceae. The species of this genus are characterized by high morphological diversity. Dendrobium huoshanense is an endemic species of China with high pharmaceutical and conservation value. However, the boundary of the species is still in debate. In this study, we aim to explore the variations of phenotypic traits affected by environmental and genetic factors, and define the boundaries among D. huoshanense and its related species.

    Methods: We measured 12 phenotypic traits from 2,279 specimens in 16 populations from the dendrobiums planting base in Huoshan County, Anhui Province, East China, including wild and F1, F2 generation of D. huoshanense, wild D. henanense, D. moniliforme and D. catenatum. The F1 and F2 generations of D. huoshanense were cultivated from the seeds of random hand-pollination flowers in wild population and F1 generation population from this base, respectively. We first used common-garden experiment method and intergenerational comparison to estimate the phenotypic variations of D. huoshanense affected by environmental and genetic factors. Furthermore, the phenotypic variations of D. huoshanense and its related species were estimated by statistical analysis.

    Results: The results showed that F1 and F2 generations of D. huoshanense in greenhouse and woodland conditions had larger and longer pseudobulbs than that of wild specimens under the common-garden experiment method. With the intergenerational comparison, we found that the pseudobulb diameters of F1 generation were wider than that of F2 generation. Among related species, we found that the pseudobulb lengths and diameters as well as the petals of D. huoshanense were significantly different from that of D. catenatum and D. moniliforme. At the same time, D. huoshanense only showed significant differences in morphological traits of pseudobulbs with that of D. henanense.

    Conclusion: Our results suggest that both environmental and genetic factors have significant effects on phenotypic changes of D. huoshanense and affect the delineation of species boundaries among D. huoshanense and its related species.

    Original Papers: Animal Diversity
    Autumn-winter habitat selection by the re-wild Milu (Elaphurus davidianus) at the early stage after release in Dongting Lake Wetland, China
    Xin Xia, Jing Ren, Li Li, Haiyan Wang, Yucheng Song, Daode Yang, Zhigang Jiang
    Biodiv Sci. 2021, 29 (8):  1087-1096.  doi:10.17520/biods.2021012
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    Purpose: For restoring the once extinct Milu (Elaphurus davidianus, Père David's deer), the wild management authority in China launched a Milu rewilding project in the Dongting Lake area, Hunan Province, China in 2016. We carried the study to investigate how the re-wild Milu select habitat in the field release area in autumn and winter.

    Method: In March 2016, 16 Milu individuals (11 of them fitted with GPS collars) from the Jiangsu Dafeng Milu National Nature Reserve were released into the wild of Junshan Houhu in Hunan East Dongting Lake National Nature Reserve. From October 2016 to January 2017, with the aid of GPS satellite tracking and ground tracking of field released Milu, we used the quadrat method to study the autumn/winter habitat selection by the released Milu. Nine habitat variables were measured in the both Milu-used quadrats and non-used quadrats: habitat type, food abundance, herbage coverage, arbor coverage, distance to water, distance to road, distance to human settlement, distance to shelter, and hidden level.

    Results: (1) There was a significant difference in the selection of habitat types by the re-wild Milu between autumn and winter. In autumn, the re-wild Milu appeared to select habitat randomly, whereas they preferred the habitats near ponds and used the herbage swamp randomly, avoiding shrub-grass habitats. (2) There were significant differences in selection for food abundance, herbage coverage, arbor coverage, distance to road, distance to human settlement, distance to shelter, and the hidden level by the re-wild Milu between autumn and winter. There was no significant difference in selection for distance to water. (3) In autumn, the re-wild Milu preferred those habitats that of lower hidden level, higher food abundance, higher herbage coverage, and closer to shelter. There was a significant difference in hidden levels between used quadrats and control (non-used) quadrats in both seasons. Additionally, there were significant differences in the selection for food abundance, herbage coverage, and distance to shelter overall. There were no significant differences in the selection of distance to water, arbor coverage, distance to road, and distance to human settlement. (4) In winter, the re-wild Milu preferred those habitats that are closer to water, with higher food abundance, or higher herbage coverage. There were significant differences in food abundance, herbage coverage, and distance to water between used quadrats and non-used quadrats, but there were no significant differences in distance to road, distance to human settlement, distance to shelter, or hidden level.

    Conclusion: The study revealed the differences in habitat selection by the re-wild Milu in autumn and winter, which provide baseline data for habitat management of Milu rewilding in the wetlands of Dongting Lake.

    Analysis on the hotspot and conservation gaps of bird biodiversity in Guangdong Province based on MaxEnt model
    Xing Ma, Hao Wang, Wei Yu, Yong Du, Jianchao Liang, Huijian Hu, Shengrong Qiu, Lu Liu
    Biodiv Sci. 2021, 29 (8):  1097-1107.  doi:10.17520/biods.2020229
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    Aims: With the increasingly prominent environmental problems, biodiversity is at risk. While the rich soil and water resources in Guangdong Province, China, have given rise to a large number of species, the rapid urban expansion of the Pearl River Delta has challenged protecting biodiversity. Our goal in this study was to evaluate biodiversity conservation in Guangdong Province to better inform future urban planning so that is compatible with the protection of biodiversity and minimizes conflict between development and conservation.

    Methods: We used bird spatial distribution data from the second terrestrial wildlife resources survey in China to create habitat suitability models using MaxEnt at high spatial resolution (100 m × 100 m). We then identified protection gaps by determining the locations of biodiversity hotspots that we compared to the ecological red line, permanent basic farmland and urban development boundary in existing urban plans.

    Results: We recorded 173 species of birds belonging to 45 families and 13 orders in Guangdong Province. Regions with high species richness were mainly distributed in three areas: Nanling, Eastern Guangdong, and Jiangmen-Yangjiang-Yunfu. The environmental factors affecting the bird richness patterns significantly differed among species. In general, land use, altitude, and annual average temperature difference were dominant factors. The spatial locations of hotspots of protected birds were similar to those of all birds, with a spatial overlap rate of 63.0%. The overlap was mainly distributed in Nanling and Eastern Guangdong. By contrast, we found large apparent differences between hotspot locations of resident and migratory birds, which overlapped by only 25.3%. Most resident birds were distributed relatively close to the north, while most migratory birds tended towards the south. The overlap of hotspots with permanent basic farmland was significantly higher than the ecological red line. Only a small portion of the hotspots were distributed within the urban development boundary. Altogether, we found obvious protection gaps for all groups of birds we considered.

    Conclusions: Our high-resolution bird richness maps enabled a critical evaluation of where biodiversity hotspots conflict with urban developments. Our results provide urgent support for the implementation of biodiversity zoning protection and the development of management policies within the three control lines of the urban development boundary, permanent basic farmland, and ecological red line. Ultimately, our results provide a useful reference and roadmap for biodiversity protection and ecological planning adjustment in Guangdong Province.

    Food sources and trophic levels of terrestrial cave fauna in Yuping Town, Libo County, Guizhou Province
    Chengxiang Xu, Lu Zhao, Weifeng Du, Siqiang Zhang, Yongying Wu, Fei Zhou
    Biodiv Sci. 2021, 29 (8):  1108-1119.  doi:10.17520/biods.2021086
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    Aims:Karst caves are a gathering place for biodiversity in belowground extreme environments, but little is known about their food web structure. We investigated this by assessing the food sources and trophic levels of terrestrial cave fauna in Yuping Town, Libo County, Guizhou Province. We further documented cave biodiversity resource utilization to provide important reference data to inform conservation of karst ecosystems.

    Methods: We investigated terrestrial cave animals in three representative caves in Yuping Town, Libo County, Guizhou Province in October 2016. In each cave system, we recorded δ13C and δ15N values of terrestrial cave animals and assessed variation in these characteristics. We then assessed the basic carbon source by analyzing the stable isotopes δ13C and δ15N. We then estimated the contribution rates of five types of basic carbon sources to terrestrial consumers using IsoSource software, and explored the trophic level of each faunal species in each cave.

    Results: The δ13C value of cave plants ranged from -38.25‰ ± 0.95‰ to -29.44‰ ± 0.49‰, while that of soil organic matter ranged from -32.73‰ ± 0.03‰ to -24.68‰ ± 0.41‰. Most of these values were outside the change interval of δ13C in cave plants. The δ13C and δ15N values of cave fauna ranged from -34.22‰ ± 0.39‰ to -14.83‰ ± 0.78‰ and from 1.86‰ ± 0.20‰ to 16.43‰ ± 0.05‰, respectively, suggesting large differences among species and groups. The 78.3% contribution rate of soil organic matter to cave fauna was higher than that of the primary productivity of plants. The trophic level of cave consumers in Yuping Town, Libo County ranged from 1.01 to 5.32. Megascolecidae, snails, Oniscidae, horseshoes, Tipulidae, and Noctuidae were mainly classified as primary consumers into the second trophic level; Scutigeridae, Myrmeleontidae (larvae), and bats were classified into the third trophic level; Blattidae were classified into the second to third trophic level; Rhaphidophoridae and Labiduridae were classified into the second to fourth trophic level; and spiders spanned three trophic levels, being classified into the second to fifth trophic level.

    Conclusions: Organic matter in cave soil is the main food source for cave consumers. Most cave fauna in the same taxonomic group had a consistent trophic level in caves, though some fauna belonging to the same taxa had different trophic levels in different caves or in different light zones of the same cave.

    Original Papers: Cultural Diversity
    Applications of Wa traditional culture in biodiversity conservation
    Hua Shao, Jingbiao Yang, Dayuan Xue
    Biodiv Sci. 2021, 29 (8):  1120-1127.  doi:10.17520/biods.2020480
    Abstract ( 263 )   HTML ( 15 )   PDF (1056KB) ( 276 )   Supplementary Material   Save
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    Aims: There is an emerging recognition that cultural diversity and biodiversity are inherently linked. Wa people have formed a rich culture in the long process of utilization and management of biological resources from local areas. This study reports the wild plants traditionally used by Wa people and related traditional culture. It is of great significance to understand the interaction between Wa traditional culture and biodiversity for sustainable development of the community.

    Methods: We investigated the wild plants traditionally used by Wa people and their culture in Cangyuan and Ximeng autonomous counties by a semi-structured interview method to gather the plant inventory and culture information.

    Results: The wild plants traditionally used by Wa people are abundant, and are the basis for their traditional diet, medicine, clothing, and architectural culture. The ecological view, customary law, and customs of Wa people based on nature worship are constantly promoting the conservation and sustainable utilization of biodiversity in the local areas. Local governments have made efforts to protect the traditional culture and knowledge. For example, intangible cultural heritage projects have been applied to facilitate industrial development for poverty alleviation and rural revitalization. The factors of cultural diversity loss include marketization and urbanization, lifestyle changes, weak protection consciousness, and invasion of foreign culture. Local communities' incompetence to transform characteristic biological resources into ecological products also restricts the sustainable utilization of bioresources.

    Recommendations: Our recommendations include improving policies and regulations for traditional knowledge and culture, establishing databases of traditional knowledge, strengthening publicity activities and education to enhance the awareness of protection and inheritance, facilitating scientific knowledge research and professional experts training. Overall, promoting cultural diversity could be a promising approach for biodiversity conservation and sustainable use of bioresources in the ethnic minority areas.

    Reviews
    The mechanism of constructing mixed-ploidy populations in polyploid species
    Yongbo Liu
    Biodiv Sci. 2021, 29 (8):  1128-1133.  doi:10.17520/biods.2021213
    Abstract ( 322 )   HTML ( 31 )   PDF (560KB) ( 210 )   Save
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    Background & Aims: Polyploidization, the duplication of entire genomes, is a key driver in the processes of speciation and evolution, and almost all plants experience at least one whole-genome duplication (WGD). Because polyploid species have higher mortality ratio than diploid ones, the mechanism of polyploidization is considered a “dead-end”. However, some plant species exist in nature as mixed ploidy populations. These populations contain species that exist at different polyploidy levels and therefore provide the best opportunities to study the mechanisms of polyploidy evolution.

    Progresses: Beginning with the origination of polyploid plants from WGD, I reviewed the progress on the formation, establishment and maintenance of mixed-ploidy populations in polyploid plants. I also discussed the mechanisms of polyploid speciation through the population divergence of polyploid plants adaption in a natural environment.

    Prospects: Detection of the ploidy components, divergence of multi-copy genes, and niche differentiation of polyploids facilitate the understanding of ecological adaptation and maintenance of mixed ploidy populations and the evolutionary mechanisms of polyploid plants.

    Research progress on the geographical isolation of terrestrial mammals
    Lu Liu, Yao Chi, Zhaoning Wu, Tianlu Qian, Jiechen Wang
    Biodiv Sci. 2021, 29 (8):  1134-1145.  doi:10.17520/biods.2020476
    Abstract ( 226 )   HTML ( 28 )   PDF (1110KB) ( 156 )   Save
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    Background & Aim: Geographical isolation is one of the main factors that drives the formation of species distribution patterns. This paper reviews the research done in recent decades on the effects of geographical isolation on the spatial distribution of terrestrial mammals, and explores the influence of different factors on the species distribution. Progresses: Both natural factors (e.g., mountain ranges, bodies of water, deserts, extreme environments, and climate change) and human factors (e.g., landscape structure changes, transportation facilities, and construction) can affect the distribution of terrestrial mammals. Natural factors usually play a role in the long-term evolution of terrestrial mammals. However, in recent centuries or even decades, species distribution characteristics have significantly changed due to human impacts. The effect of geographical isolation on terrestrial mammals is common in nature, and is a dynamic change where the scale effects vary for different kinds of geographical isolation. Regardless, mammals have responded to these forms of geographical isolation at individual and population levels. While human activities have greater impacts on the spatial distribution pattern of terrestrial mammals, efforts have been made to improve the living conditions of wildlife.Prospects: We propose the following suggestions for future research: (1) a deeper study on the contribution of geographical isolation to zoogeographical boundary formation; (2) a deeper study on the effects of geographical isolation on the genetic and adaptive mechanisms of species at the micro scale through the use molecular biology and various omics techniques; (3) learning from research done on other animal groups in an effort to strengthen the tracking and monitoring of terrestrial mammals in China; (4) a better analysis on the evolutionary history of animal distribution by combining zoogeography with data science.


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